Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon just issued a veto to Senate Bill 29, a bill placing additional burdens on union members who want to make their voices heard in our political system.
Senate Bill 29, also known as the “paycheck deception” bill, would have made it more difficult for union members to deduct dues from their paychecks, and for those dues to be used toward advocacy. The requirements contained in this bill are not expected from corporations, CEO’s, or any other entity that wants to make a political contribution.
SB 29 is also an ALEC copycat bill, with similar versions passed in Washington, Alabama, Arizona, and elsewhere. These laws are promoted with the sole intent of weakening unions and silencing the voices of workers.
“With today’s veto, Governor Nixon stood up for the basic rights of Missouri’s everyday heroes – the people who work every day to keep our state working. Nurses, teachers, police officers and countless other middle class Missourians would have lost their voice on the job if this unfair and dangerous paycheck deception bill were to become law,” said Hugh McVey, president of the Missouri AFL-CIO.
This issue doesn’t only affect union workers. Members of Working America, alongside members from the faith community, sent hundreds of messages to legislators asking them to oppose paycheck deception.
“Paycheck deception won’t help educate Missouri’s children – but it will make it tougher for teachers to advocate for manageable class sizes,” wrote Fr. Steve Robeson of St. John’s Catholic Church in Imperial, MO, “It won’t create any jobs, but it will make it more difficult for hardworking public employees to do their jobs. We all deserve better.”
SB 29 was promoted by extremist Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones, but it met opposition from both sides of the aisle. In the Senate, the bill was rammed through after a six-hour filibuster. In the House, the bill passed narrowly with every Democrat and 13 Republicans voting against it.
One of the Republicans to vote against the paycheck deception bill was Rep. Anne Zerr of St. Charles, seen here reading letters written to her by Working America members. Because of your activism, anti-worker forces in Missouri don’t have the votes needed to override Gov. Nixon’s veto. It just goes to show that when we take action, workers win.